This is the first in a series of podcasts addressing the topic of Syrian Refugees. This episode contains an interview with Rich Rosendahl from November 2015. Rich is the founder and director of The Nations, an organization focused on coaching individuals and groups on how to connect with our refugee neighbors locally and around the world. Rich has a broad range of experience in building deep relationships and networks with refugee neighbors in the Middle East and in the U.S.
It is difficult to say about any of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s speeches, “This one is his best.” The depth of content and delivery of his messages is so consistent every time he spoke. However, there are messages that are more well known and more influential in the thinking, conscience, and behavior in the history of our nation. One of those messages is his speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C., delivered to over 250,000 who had gathered for the March on Washington in the summer of 1963. Continue reading
Below are excerpts from MLK’s “Letter From Birmingham Jail”, written and developed in response to an open letter issued by eight white clergymen who were opposed to the Birmingham civil rights demonstrations in Spring of 1963. Continue reading
There is a fascinating discussion between the two theologians on twitter, sparked by Volf’s latest work, Allah: A Christian Response, in which he takes the position and Muslims and Christians worship the same God but have different understandings. Here are a few of the interchanges between the two of them on twitter (sparked by an initial tweet by Justin Taylor of McKnight’s comments):
Please watch this video, all of it. It is the story of followers of Jesus who have seen the evil of DAESH (ISIS) directly. Hear their stories and listen to their response. Continue reading
“…we must see Terrorism for what it is: an invitation to fear proffered by our enemy in order to perpetuate our conflict with him. It means we cannot win until we cease to hate.”
Another great, insightful, and challenging piece from composer, author, and my good friend Callen Clarke: Continue reading
“Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”—Jesus
We often talk about possessing the “faith of a child” (although Jesus never actually mentions this). We rarely talk about what Jesus actually does mention: possessing the humility and the lowness of status of a child.
Beloved, it is okay to be afraid to love in the face of threat and violence. It is okay to want something else, anything other than a love that serves even those who are our enemies, and to pray, “Please take this cup from me.”
We are not up to the challenge to love so deeply.
I am not up to it.
So, we rely on the strength of Christ, who also prayed “take this cup” but then surrendered: “Your will be done, not mine.” Then he took up his cross in order to reveal a love that cannot be deterred or overcome by fear, violence, or even death.
This is the only kind of love that matters.
Someone asked me about the potential threat of “terrorist infiltration” if we as a nation provide refuge for those fleeing Syria and northern Iraq. Here is my response: Continue reading
My friend Todd Littleton posted a great interview (as well as some of his own thoughts) with Ryan Abernathy, Senior Director of Programs and Nutrition at the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, concerning government services such as food stamps (SNAP, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families), other services, and the church’s role with those in poverty. Todd’s post also links to another two part interview with Ryan entitled “Facts About American Poverty” (part 1 and part 2) over at Marty Duren’s Kingdom in the Midst blog.
I highly encourage you to read all three of those posts and listen to the podcast. Here are some snippets of the latter: